Wednesday, October 22, 2008


When we hosted llama treks several years ago, city kids and out-of-town adults would go crazy with curiosity over our hedge apples and would carry them home to show their family. We have many of these Osage Orange trees on our property, most a nuisance because of their sharp thorns, but some lining the road are pretty. A friend's horse galloped a bit too close under one with low branches, and it nearly tore her shirt off and left some nasty scratches (I felt bad that I laughed hysterically over her bare back before I saw the scratches). There is a giant one on the grounds of Old Fort Harrod, with huge long branches like a banyan tree that kids love to climb on.
Rumor has it that the fruit will repel spiders and insects- I'll leave that up to you to decide whether or not that's an old wive's tale. Here's what Wikipedia has to say:

We have seen squirrels and deer eating the "apples", and our horses love them! A friend of mine and I were remarking that they seem like they'd be bitter, but then again have you ever tasted grass? The bark is a vivid orange, and I have seen some beautiful yarn dyed with shavings of the wood. Here's a wooden measuring spoon set that I have- it's easy to tell which spoon is from Osage orange (the teaspoon).

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